Dubai-based hospitality group Almulla, today launched what is touted as the world's first Sharia compliant hotel brand portfolio. The most distinguishing feature of this chain is that only Halal food will be served on its premises and no alcohol will be sold.
The hotel group strategic plan calls for 30 properties by the end of 2008.
"There are plenty of individual Sharia compliant hotels throughout the world. However their positioning is usually dictated by the owner, either as an independent hotel, one within a chain or due to the Sharia law of country where they are situated," commented Abdulla M Almulla, Chairman of Almulla Hospitality. "Our brand proposition is so distinct that guests will be confident that our brand values have universal consistency."
The Muslim traveler market is increasing around the world due to the increasing wealth in their communities combined with conscious lifestyle living which represent ten per cent of the world tourism market, and is one of the fastest growing segments.
Their average spend is ten to fifty per cent higher than that of the average leisure or business traveler. The bottom line is that conscious lifestyle tourism is expected to grow at a rate of twenty per cent per annum, five times more than the average traditional market segment.
The specific destinations targeted are Saudi Arabia, UAE, Jordan, Egypt, Malaysia and Thailand. Beyond this first wave, Almulla Hospitality is looking forward to set operation in Europe with 15 deluxe hotels to be followed by 25 business hotels in "the second European wave".
Overall strategy of the hotel group is to reach 150 hotels by 2013 with expected total investment of over $2 billion. Abdulla Almulla said that institutional investors and high net worth individuals (HNWI) will be the back bone for such growth drive.
DUBAI, Oct.25th 2007 (Press Released)